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Teachers – 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy and History
May 15th, 2012 by Jessica

Week 41. Teachers. Did you have a favorite teacher when you were growing up? What class(es) did this person teach and why did he/she make an impact on your life?

Me (left) with Mrs. Harrison's Students at Michigan Youth Arts Festival

Me (left) with Mrs. Harrison's Students at Michigan Youth Arts Festival

Mr. James Cooper of Kaufmann Elementary School in Bridgeport, Michigan was my favorite teacher.  He taught my 5th grade class in 1987-1988,  and I adored him.  He was an amazing teacher.  Mr. Cooper didn’t take any shit from anybody.  He explained things so we could understand them.  He guided us through our lessons with charisma and excitement.  He made me want to learn!  I read books for him.  I did math for him.  I acted in a commercial for the school play because he asked me to.  I just wanted to be a better person because of him.  He just had that incredible quality that makes a truly stellar teacher rise above the rest.  Mr. Cooper later moved to Bridgeport Junior High to teach 8th grade Science after I graduated and went to college.  Mr. Cooper made me want to be an educator when I grew up.

Mrs. Louise Harrison of Heritage High School in Saginaw, Michigan was also an incredible teacher.  She taught my senior year Poetry class in 1994-1995, and had similar charisma and a love for her professional that Mr. Cooper displayed.  Mrs. Harrison didn’t just teach us about poetry.  She helped us to experience it in her classroom.  Through writing exercises, workshops and critiques, she showed us how to become better writers on our own – not just because she said so.  Mrs. Harrison loved teaching, and I loved learning from her.

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© 2013 Jessica M. Green